The goal for digital marketing professionals is to find the next content piece that will “break the Internet.”
The challenge lies in being able to identify content that’s interesting enough to engage the masses while maintaining relevance to your brand.
Although a provocative photoshoot shoot with Kim Kardashian might not be in the cards for your brand’s next online content strategy, your team still has
the opportunity to create on-brand content that attracts attention from credible sites.
That takes is putting in extra thought and effort to go beyond the standard content creation process. Here are six tactics for creating valuable, useful
1. Find a relevant, timely and newsworthy subject.
Newsworthy and timely content has great potential for being picked up as a cited resource for publications.
To create this type of content, you’ll have to be in the know and ready to create and push out content pieces on the fly. Start by setting Google Alerts for your brand’s keywords to receive email updates with happenings in your industry. You’ll also
want to check up on Google News daily to catch the things your alerts might’ve missed.
Using websites like Quora can help when looking to find a subject relevant to your audience.
You can search keywords related to your product or service to find consumers’ questions about your industry. By setting out to answer those specific
questions, you’ll increase your chances of being picked up as a solid resource for journalists.
For example, if your brand or client is a cat food company, you can search Quora to see what consumers want to know about dry versus canned cat food, for
2. Make sure your idea isn’t already out there.
The necessity of original content in a link-worthy content strategy is obvious. What’s not immediately obvious is whether your “out-of-the-box” idea has
already been covered.
To get a more refined and complete indication of whether your potential piece is already online, run a search on a websites like BuzzSumo. This will show you the top results related to your topic or possible title of the piece.
If it turns out your content idea is already published, think of how to make yours different. Ask yourself what you can do to add value to the piece. More
specifically, determine how the added value will benefit your target publications and their audiences.
Once you have created the improved content piece, use a backlink checker like Ahrefs or OpenSiteExplorer to prospect sites that have linked to or written about similar pieces.
3. Implement new design techniques.
Spark interest in your content piece by doing something noteworthy with its design or development process.
Sit down with your design team to brainstorm ideas for creating more interactive content or how to illustrate your current content in a new way. This will
provide additional link prospects for your outreach team. Additionally, it will give your designers and developers the opportunity to showcase their work
within their online communities.
4. Create original images/graphics.
Editors won’t be impressed by your piece if they see a stock photo. Come up with original graphics and pictures to accompany your content. This will add
unique value to your piece and help editors differentiate it from the thousand other pitches they receive daily.
If your design team is too busy to help you put something together on a tight deadline, use tools such as Canva and Piktochart to create custom graphics.
As far as original images go, use a good-quality camera and find a unique setting. It might even be worth hiring a freelance photographer to help you build
a gallery of original images.
5. Document trends in your own news feeds.
Possibly the best way to attract an editor with your content is to create content pieces based on what you think they might be looking for.
Keep a journal over a week—or a day for newsworthy pieces—to document topics that are consistently relevant on your Facebook feed, in your target
publications and in the news. Do your best to determine why these topics are sticking and how you can enter the conversation with branded content.
Pay attention to the news feeds of editors and journalists at your target publications, as you’ll gain a better understanding of what they find most
RELATED: How to create sharable content by "newsjacking" breaking events.
By following what they post, you’ll be able to better determine what ideas they’d be willing to consider for future content.
6. Acknowledge others.
Sometimes it’s necessary to give online recognition before you get any back.
Start by selecting a topic that is relevant to your brand and potentially interesting to editors. Once you’ve got it, figure out how you can highlight
other brands or people in a unique and genuine way. As you choose what brands/people to highlight in your piece, be sure you consider whether they have the
A press/news page
An active blog
A thriving social media presence
Initial outreach is a great way to gauge interest and potential engagement among the people/brands you choose to highlight.
Do this by sending out a quick email explaining the piece you plan to write and why they were selected to be a part of it. It’s also worth asking for
additional info/images they would like added to the piece.
For example, if your client is a women’s hair care product, you could write a post on five national companies that are working to improve equality for
women in the workplace. Conduct research to find five companies that deserve the recognition, then email them before you write the piece asking for quotes
As your audience becomes more skeptical, it will be important to keep evolving your content and outreach. To stay in the know, try following the blogs and
Twitter accounts of influential people in your industry.
is an outreach strategist working with the digital PR team at
on Twitter. A version of this
originally appeared on Group High’s